Israel’s Zim Integrated Shipping Services Ltd. a unit of billionaire Idan Ofer’s Kenon Holdings Ltd., has reportedly hired two banks: Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch unit and Barclays Plc to carry out its initial public offering (IPO) in the US.
The IPO, is planned for the first half of 2016. ZIM is currently the 19th largest shipping line by operating fleet capacity at 338,004 TEUs.
Like most global shipping lines, ZIM has struggled to turn a profit since start of the global economic recession and trade volumes remained stagnant, rates fell and carriers began purchasing larger, more efficient vessels.
From 2009 to 2014, ZIM has reported annual losses totaling more than $1.2 billion. The Israeli ocean carrier recently returned to the black, posting adjusted net profits of $23 million in the second quarter of 2015 compared with a net loss of $50 million the previous year.
In the summer, Zim completed a huge debt settlement of US$3.4 billion in which banks, bondholders and shipping companies that leased vessels to Zim forewent US$1.7 billion for a massive 50% haircut.